Former California Sup. Eastin takes helm at Educate Our State

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Ex-California State Superintendent Delaine Eastin elected Chair of Educate Our State

Educate Our State, the California organization committed to organizing communities to improve public education in California, announced that Delaine Eastin, former State Superintendent of California, is the new Chair of its Board of Directors.

Eastin is a long time advisor to Educate Our State, and has a strong history of advocating on behalf of children, and of reminding public officials that the California Constitution explicitly states that education should come first.

Delaine Eastin served as the California State Superintendent of Public Instruction (SPI) for eight years from 1995 to 2003, the first and only woman in history elected to that position. As an elected constitutional officer, Delaine managed more than 40% of the California budget and oversaw the education of 6.1 million children. Superintendent Eastin championed state standards and assessments aligned to standards, reduced class size in kindergarten through third grade, and oversaw a strengthening of arts education and hands-on science, including gardens in school. As SPI she fought to rebuild California school libraries and to wire schools for technology. She was the architect of the innovative Net Days, copied nationally in more than 40 states and internationally in more than 40 countries. Delaine has been an advocate for substantial increases in school construction funding, improved school nutrition, universal preschool, full-day mandatory kindergarten, better career and technical education and greater civic engagement of students. She advocated a longer school year and more safety nets for children who fall behind.

Prior to serving as SPI, Delaine served 8 years in the California State Assembly where she chaired several committees, including the Education Committee. After she termed out as SPI, Delaine was the first Executive Director of the National Institute for School Leadership and then a Distinguished Visiting Professor of Educational Leadership at Mills College in Oakland. She has served on a number of boards that support the education, health and civic engagement of children from preschool to college. An elementary school in Union City is named after her. She has received numerous other awards and state and national recognition for her contributions to children.

Former Chair of Educate our State, James Sutton, one of the leading political and election law attorneys in California, will continue as a key advisor to the group.

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Katherine Welch
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